Mounting prints background lighted?

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jernejk

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It's well known that paper's reflective contrast is really quite low and there's nothing you can do about it. The whole zone system has been created to compensate this limitation and reproduce the original scene's tonality on the final print.

With digital, many photographs are enjoyed on screen rather than on paper. And screen has some advantages, namely better contrast and hence more separation of tones than paper could ever provide. And I admit, I like the rich tonality the screen offers.

But it's so easy to get the same benefit also on paper... just backlight it! For example, I have a print in front of me, which looks really black. Backlighting it however, reveals so much tones in the shadows (undesired in this case, as I wanted black background) and far better separates mid and high tones.

Of course, photos would need to be printed specifically for backlight mounting. Zones suddenly stretch much further and you need to check the look against backgound light, rather than reflective light.

With availability of LED lights, making such frame should be quite simple. IKEA's Ribba frames have enough space between the wall and photo to put LEDs in there.

I think I have a new project on my hands :smile:
 

jp498

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Some plastic photo papers were made for backlighting... Cibachrome materials were made for displays, etc..
 
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